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Why Tonya Harding Is The Greatest Skater Of All Time

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by Ziggy, May 19, 2010.

  1. dr.frog

    dr.frog Well-Known Member

    Well, don't forget that the first little (well, young) flutzer with bendy positions who started the whole craze was.... (drum roll...) Nicole Bobek. :lol:
  2. Spiralgraph

    Spiralgraph Well-Known Member


    I may have to disagree a little, Tonya may have been given better programs at some points but whether she actually accepted advice and assistance or even "better" programs is another matter entirely. Considering she threw off advice to go to the 1994 Olympics earlier to adjust to the time change and ignored that wisdom, I have a feeling Tonya didn't take advice well. She was her own worst enemy.
  3. Yazmeen

    Yazmeen Well-Known Member

    Absolutely agree that she was her own worst enemy; Tonya's biggest obstacle wasn't other skaters, judges, or USFS, but Tonya herself. She deserves a PLATINUM medal for squandering talent, opportunity, and multiple chances at becoming the best.

    I would tie her with Midori as the greatest jumper ever. Greatest skater? Not a chance, there's more to skating than powerful jumps and crossovers. She didn't have the grace and fluidity of other ladies with great jumps such as Michelle or Yu Na or the plain charm of someone like Tara.
  4. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

    Tara charming? To each their own I guess. I would rate Yu Na a great jumper, Kwan I would rate only a very good one at best.
  5. briancoogaert

    briancoogaert Well-Known Member

    I guess it's more of a cheering thread for Tonya, but IMO, she is not at all the greatest ever.
    Powerful jumps and crossovers. But nothing more into her skating. No steps, no lightness...
    IMO, Midori Ito is the only one with the power and a bit of the rest ! YuNa is the perfect balance.
  6. miki88

    miki88 Active Member

    Tonya is not the greatest skater, but I consider her to be one of the most naturally talented skaters, at least in terms of sheer athleticism. The girl reportedly did not practice that much, yet she was still able to pull off those amazing jumps without much effort. If only she were a little more dedicated to her sport..... :hat1:
  7. neptune

    neptune Well-Known Member

    I can agree with that. I'm just saying that Tonya didn't have the best steering and guidance throughout her career, especially :duh: from her parents.
  8. neptune

    neptune Well-Known Member

    But Tonya had great spins as well. Are "grace" and "fluidity" that important, though, for being a great skater? I guess it all depends on how you define great skating.

    That surprises me a bit--I didn't know that. I would have expected younger skaters to be more open to skating with Tonya. I wonder if most of that was coming from Tara herself or her parents?
    Last edited: May 20, 2010
  9. skatinsandy

    skatinsandy New Member

    she's definately the most known skater of all time
  10. Marco

    Marco Well-Known Member


    We can say "if only" to virtually anyone. At least she delivered a few memorable performances and can be remembered for something positive.

    She puts Kerrigan to shame, btw.
  11. leafygreens

    leafygreens Well-Known Member

    Would love to see that - but if she is too unstable enough to skate herself, how can she be stable enough to coach? Would she show up every day on time to teach? Would she be there for all the competitions? Would some life event get in the way (arrest, relationship, etc.)? It would be awful if she subconciously sabotaged a student the way she sabotaged herself.
  12. museksk8r

    museksk8r Holding an edge and looking dangerously sexy

    She's easily the best female jumper in the history of US figure skating. I even liked her 3Axel better than Midori Ito's, personally. I also thought she was a powerful spinner and she had great skating skills. She should have won Olympic bronze in 1992, IMO. Sure, she didn't have Kerrigan's body line/spiral and choreography, but everything else about Tonya's skating was superior over Nancy's from 1991-1992. It just once again goes to show how extremely important it is in figure skating to skate a clean SP. Nancy's SP saved her the bronze spot on the podium in 1992.
  13. Marco

    Marco Well-Known Member

  14. museksk8r

    museksk8r Holding an edge and looking dangerously sexy

    :lol: I totally understand why you would laugh at Nancy's choreo, generally speaking. I generally would laugh too, but her '92 LP was one of the couple times I felt she had good program construction, at least in comparison to Tonya Harding. The other time was the Beauty and the Beast LP in 1993. Plus, I felt Nancy's music in '92 and '93 for the LP was much better than Tonya's music choices for her LPs those years. Every other program of Nancy's I agree was laughable in terms of music choice and choreography. :D Her SP music in 1992 and her LP music and choreo in 1994 in particular were pants wetting in its cheesiness. :p Tonya's long programs were so disjointed in their music cuts and laugh worthy too. ;)
  15. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

    I would agree if it weren't for the spanish porn aerobics mid section. That arm variation on the sit spin in her combination set to the siren noise in the background cracks me up, too. How did Paul Wylie get away from Mary's awful choreography?
  16. museksk8r

    museksk8r Holding an edge and looking dangerously sexy

    :lol: Speaking of porn, how about Tonya Harding's slow section music in her '92 LP. Her music goes from sounding so Olympic to porno music. :rofl:
  17. chipso1

    chipso1 Well-Known Member

    15-year old Tonya winning the long program and the silver medal at Skate America in 1986. Her pivot at 2:10 is :eek:


    2A, 3T, 3Lz, 3L-2T, 2F-2T-2L, 2A-2T, 3S-2T, 2Lz, 1F-2T.

    A young Tonya defeats soon-to-be World champ Jill Trenary at the 1989 Skate America:


    3Lz, 2A, 3T-2T, 3S, 3F, 1A, 3L-2T, 2A-2A sequence.

    Tonya, the 1989 US bronze medalist, was in 2nd place heading into the FS in 1990. It's too bad she bombed there...she was MUCH more talented than Holly Cook (who ended up going to worlds in 1990...and winning the bronze there:eek:).


    ^^Just a total meltdown.

    Still, she's one of the best ever. Think of how great she could have been with a coach like Frank Carroll, far, far away from Oregon, her family, and that crazy mo-fo Jeff Gillooly.
  18. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

    It was nice for Cook to have her own career high point moment though at the last ever event with figures at the 1990 Worlds. Even with figures winning the bronze and beating people like Yamaguchi and Lebedeva (a much more seasoned figured specialist) was a big surprise and thrill for her. Once the figures were abolished her career was over basically. She dropped to 6th at U.S Nationals the very next year.
  19. CaptCrunch

    CaptCrunch New Member

    Its so funny that in the last year figures were contested the judges finally started to judge them accordingly. In previous years I seriously doubt if a skater like Holly Cook would have come anywhere near 4th place at her first worlds. I still say Yamaguchi should have won the bronze medal at 90 worlds. Cook had no business being 4th in the LP there. She should have finished behind skaters like Sargent and Grossman in the LP. Didn't Grossman land 3 different triples in that LP (?) and she certainly had much better presentation than Cook.

    Getting back to Harding....that 2A at the start of her LP at 89 US Nationals is probably the best 2A I've ever seen in ladies skating. It had such amazing height and power.
  20. viennese

    viennese Well-Known Member

    Harding did seem unbeatable in 1991.

    Somewhere in that '91 program, she did a hitch kick, a totally unnecessary but awesome crowd pleasing move -- *nobody* does those. You hear the crowd go crazy for it. For moves like that and the death drop, she was so explosive and strong. It was painful to see her lose that fire.

    It did seem that she was, as so many have said, her own worst enemy as far as sustaining that greatness.
  21. Ziggy

    Ziggy Well-Known Member

    It was.

    What's stupid is putting people into prison for an offence like this (unless it's grevious bodily harm).

    She looked very much trained and prepared at that one pro event she took part in. And she did place 2nd.

    Tonya didn't wrap. :p

    I was 8 years old in 1991. You think I would have remembered it, even if I've seen it? ;P

    P.S. US Nationals was not broadcast in Poland back then anyhow (and still isn't). ;)
    Last edited: May 22, 2010
  22. casken

    casken Well-Known Member

    So what, I was 13, in the US, and didn't see it then either. :p

    What I meant was, it's been talked about so much over the years that I figured anyone who was a hardcore skating fan and regularly posts here had seen it.

    Anyway, have you seen her 93 SA sp? One of the best 6.0 sp performances ever. One of the best Lutz combos ever, and even her spirals are great in this program.
  23. Ziggy

    Ziggy Well-Known Member

    I've only ever seen Tonya Harding talked about on FSU in the context of "look at funny white trash loser."

    Speaking of which, I would really like to read on what is happening in her life now. In a context different to the above. ;P

    I guess Jlai's links will have to do. :)

    And why would I want to watch old skating videos? ;P

    Ewwwww old judging system. :scream:

    Spirals held a fraction of the second. :scream:

    No attention paid to anything other than jumps. :scream:

    Ewww judging being made according to who landed the most jumps unless you skated in the previous group in which case the judges already forgot about your existance. :scream:

    I could go on and on. ;)
    Last edited: May 22, 2010
  24. Coco

    Coco Well-Known Member

    I don't think it's hyperbole to say that Tonya's life would have been different had she grown up skating under COP.

    She might have some issues getting high level spins and spirals, but imagine the GOE on her jumps! And her transitions mark should have been through the roof.

    I think 6.0 could really drive you batty if you were prone to bouts of self-doubt or negativity. And batty's a nice word for it, really.
  25. jlai

    jlai Title-less

    Tonya is no saint but I can't help but wonder if she looked worse than she did post-1994 because she's in skating and not in another sport. The US skating community by and large comes from an entirely different socioeconomic background and thus looks at her with their slightly conservative, middle-class bias.

    I wonder how she would have been viewed had she been talented in boxing or basketball.

    Where I grew up, I witnessed enough domestic violence ala Harding's episodes to not find anything "white trashy" about it. :(
  26. neptune

    neptune Well-Known Member

    But did she rap?

    I shoulda won
    The Albertville bronze,
    Landed most of my tricks
    And was cool as the Fonz.

    Instead I got bested
    By that Kerrigan chick.
    We tried to get her back,
    But only landed up a crick.

  27. Ziggy

    Ziggy Well-Known Member

    Jlai, I think you are right.

    And Neptune, Tonya should definitely release a single as her next career move. :D
  28. MOIJTO

    MOIJTO Banned Member

    Dear God...NO! And if she is ever considered to be, I will slit my wrists with my Klingbiles!
  29. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

    She already tried that remember? It was called "Golden Blades" and she got booed off the stage.
  30. casken

    casken Well-Known Member

    Yes, she tried her hand a singing.

    Yes, she was booed.

    Poor Tonya. :(